84 per cent on gamblers in County Derry ‘bet for big money’

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OVER 80 per cent of gamblers in County Derry bet for ‘big money’ according to new research.

84 per cent of those laying down bets in local bookmakers do so in the hope of a windfall. The figures are over 10 per cent higher than the Northern Ireland average of punters who cite a similar reason according to McLean Bookmakers.

Undertaken to determine the current state of the gambling industry in Northern Ireland, the research sought views on how, when, where, as well as the size of the bet and the processes that people employ to select who or what they bet on.

The findings also revealed the betting shop is by far the most popular option in placing a bet in Northern Ireland. Four times more popular than betting online, convenience is the underlying factor for people in choosing the shop in which to bet (75%).

The new report commissioned by McLean’s bookmakers was researched across a broad Northern Ireland demographic of nearly 700 participants last month and also highlights that the main reason for gambling remains the chance to win big money (73%).

People living in rural as opposed to urban areas are seven times more likely (35%) to choose their bookmaker based on tradition amongst those that have ever made a bet in a betting office.

Horse racing remains the first choice for those visiting bookmakers (83%) with football a close second at (59%). Unsurprisingly, with the recent success of Northern Ireland’s three Major winners, golf is the third most popular option.

Commenting on the research, Paul McLean, Managing Director McLean’s bookmakers, said: “This new report has uncovered some statistics that we expected but also raised some very surprising and interesting results.

“Despite a perception of the growth of online betting the majority of punters still prefer to have a flutter in betting offices as many people like to bet and get paid in cash (81%,” he said.

“This is a welcome statistic as it indicates there remains a strong rationale for the presence of the betting shop in the high street.

“Indeed we have invested in our premises with a view to making them more welcoming and comfortable for all those wishing to place a bet. The results also identify a preference for using bookmakers based in Northern Ireland as opposed to a multi-national plc amongst regular punters.”

Mr McLean continued: “Last month’s Grand National remains a popular event to place a bet on, however the results show that many people do not consider the form or engage in any significant research, as 40% either choose the horse by its name or select it randomly (25%). We already knew that most people, experienced gambler or otherwise, enjoy a flutter at the National and we are also expecting an upsurge in betting for Euro 2012.”